Computer users in the United Kingdom who illicitly share music files via the Internet spend more than four times as much on legal downloads than traditional record buyers, a new survey claims.
The 2005 Speakerbox study, conducted by specialist London-based digital music research firm the Leading Question, found that those “pirates” who regularly download or share unlicensed music spend an average of £5.52 ($9.61) each month on digital music. The survey found the average music consumer spends £1.27 ($2.21) each month on digital tracks.
“The 2005 Speakerbox research clearly shows that music fans who break piracy laws are highly valuable customers,” comments the Leading Question’s director Paul Brindley. “It also points out that they are eager to adopt legitimate music services in the future.”
Earlier this month, the British Phonographic Industry published data which illustrated a virtual boom in the legitimate download business. In the face of a declining market for CD albums, the trade body reported that more than 10 million digital downloads were purchased in the United Kingdom in the first six months of the year. The figure far outstripped the 5.7 million downloads sold in Britain in calendar year 2004.
Furthermore, the IFPI last week issued a report in which it stated that it was making advances in its ongoing battle against online music piracy.
The Speakerbox survey polled more than 600 PC or Mac-users nationwide who also owned a cellular phone. Respondents were questioned on such topics as music and leisure consumption habits, devices and formats, and online services.
The study was co-funded by a syndicate of clients comprising EMI, Orange, Sony Ericsson, GCap Media, Tesco and Macrovision. Plans are to conduct the survey on an annual basis.